BaubleBar Raises $10 Million For Its “Fast Fashion” Jewelry Business – TechCrunch
E-commerce jewelry business BaubleBar has raised $10 million in Series B funding, in a round led by Burch Creative Capital, the investment firm headed by billionaire retail and fashion veteran Chris Burch, known for co-founding his ex-wife’s fashion label, Tory Burch. Other participants in the round include Aspect Ventures, Triplepoint Ventures, Comcast Ventures, and existing investors Accel Partners and Greycroft Partners.
BaubleBar was co-founded by Amy Jain and Daniella Yacobovsky, longtime friends (and former shopping buddies) whose backgrounds were in banking and private equity. They came up with the idea for the business after realizing that they never stopped to buy jewelry from the retailers they visited on their many shopping trips, despite being the target demographic.
At Harvard Business School, the two began to research their idea further, and found that women shopping for jewelry were brand agnostic, and just wanted something of quality with some style that didn’t “break the bank.” Retailers were under-serving this demographic, marking up jewelry with high margins and not turning over the selection quick enough to stay on trend.
With Baublebar.com, the company caters to female shoppers looking to brighten their wardrobes. But what makes the business different from traditional competitors – or even many competing e-commerce businesses – is how quickly it can move. According to co-founder Jain, BaubleBar’s “very compressed” supply chain can see jewelry going from design process to being available for sale in as little as 4 weeks.
This allows BaubleBar to not only have the latest trends, but also react quickly when things become popular.
“We’ve kind of built a ‘fashion fashion’ take on the category. When there are new trends, we want women thinking of BaubleBar. And when she comes to us, we will have it,” Jain says.
BaubleBar designs its product in-house, and works closely with a network of manufacturing partners around the world, including those in Asia, Italy, South America and the U.S. The company also handles its own fulfillment, which has required the team to build a lot from scratch, including the software they use internally.
“There’s not a lot of third-party software designed for a fast fashion business [like ours],” says Jain. Plus, the company collects data from customers and uses that to inform its design team’s decisions.
Today, BaubleBar averages over 1,000 orders per day, 1.3 million monthly visitors, and 85% organic traffic. That’s up from 340,000 monthly visits last year, the company notes. And its 2014 sales have been triple sales from last year, with over half of repeat buyers making 3 or more purchases.
Meanwhile, BaubleBar has more recently expanded into offline via partnerships with Nordstrom and Anthropologie, which finds the company producing exclusive, monthly collections for the retailers – a business that now accounts for around 20% of BaubleBar’s total revenue.
Based in the Flatiron district, BaubleBar now has over 150 employees and is looking to hire on the technical side, as it works on its first iOS application, and other online features for its website, some of which are due out later this year. The additional funds will also be used for a new office in Asia and a new warehouse, along with other investments in infrastructure.
As for the size of the round, Jain says they thought carefully about how much they really needed to raise.
“We actually have a pretty capital-efficient business model,” she says, not only because of the margins on jewelry but also because its model doesn’t require a lot of working capital.
BaubleBar previously raised $5.6 million in seed and Series A rounds.